July 11, 2012
One decision stands out as downright bizarre, however: the sale of the majority of Britain’s gold reserves for prices between $256 and $296 an ounce, only to watch it soar so far as $1,615 per ounce today.
This plan worked brilliantly when gold fell and the other asset – for the bank at the heart of this case, yen-backed securities – rose. When the prices moved the other way, the banks were in trouble.
This is what had happened on an enormous scale by early 1999. One globally significant US bank in particular is understood to have been heavily short on two tonnes of gold, enough to call into question its solvency if redemption occurred at the prevailing price.
Goldman Sachs, which is not understood to have been significantly short on gold itself, is rumoured to have approached the Treasury to explain the situation through its then head of commodities Gavyn Davies, later chairman of the BBC and married to Sue Nye who ran Brown’s private office.
Full story here.
This article was posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2012 at 2:03 am